Thursday, December 07, 2006

Winter Meetings!

So interesting winter meeting news. All of it good (my opinion is that it all isn't, but we are making competitive moves). Below I will outline some likes and dislikes.

1) My personal favorite: Releasing Runelvys Hernandez. He was up for arbitration, would have gotten more than he deserves and was a waste of time. Bill Simmons (the Sports Guy on wrote an article today about the "tantalizer;" the guy that should, could, and would be good except for... they aren't. Hernandez was like this for awhile, and it made dropping or trading him hard b/c he seemed to have the right stuff, he just never found "himself." After so long though, you gotta can a guy who doesn't produce, should be hitting his prime and hasn't. Therefore, we don't have to agonize over why he can produce a line like: 7IP 6SO 0ER one night and then show a line of: 2IP 1SO 7ER.

2) This counts as a like/dislike. I like that we traded Burgos. I think he was a waste of time. Another tantalizer, great stuff, no performance. The guy served up gopher balls and had no control. The noise is that Bannister was rated 6th in the Mets organization (burgos was probably rated -10 in ours) with pinpoint control and low 90s fastballs. Hurrah for us! So yeh for a trade of some of our supposed "up and coming awesome bullpen guys" who never actually produced and we just made up stuff hoping they would.

3) Soria from the rule 5 draft. Why not. His numbers this year look good, he's young (which does worry me quite a bit), but if we use him sparingly at first and then give him more and more...


1) Brian Bannister. Why, because he comes from the NL. Luckily, he is young and hasn't pitch long in the NL, but I'm not sure that the minors will really have prepared him or not. If I were a GM, I would pull a AL to NL pitcher move in a heartbeat (think Arroyo, Kyle Lohse - guys who struggled in the AL, but the weaker NL allowed them to thrive), but I am weary of NL to AL (though I honestly can't think of any successful or failure examples). It just makes me nervous and to be putting hopes into this guy already...

2) Gil Meche. I like that we were competitive for a change, and I really don't think I would have minded this buy (as expensive as it was) b/c the market was bloated this year anyway, EXCEPT that Gil Meche to me, is a 3 or 4 man in the rotation and, my fears confirmed, Moore stated that this guy was our Number 1 now. That makes me nervous b/c we already have this glutton of career 4+ ERA guys in Hudson, Redman last year, Elarton, Greinke, Perez, de la Rosa and some of these guys, it would be nice saying they are in the 4s or 5s; de la Rosa and Perez touched in the 7s and 8s. I do like though that he is from the AL.

3) Rumors of Miguel Bautista. See #1 for the reasons (NL TO AL), though I might trust him more as a closer. I can't tell from his line few years ago when he had 30+ saves, but a 4+ ERA whether the 4+ ERA was during save situations or if he started and then switched (statistics without context can be very very deceptive)!

4) For all the wheeling and dealing that Moore has accomplished, does it feel like we've really improved our team much and that we won't lose close to 100 again? Maybe it's years of optimism turned sour, but I don't feel like we've done that SOMETHING to change the clubhouse culture. This could stem from the fact that we still have reggie, elarton, berroa, and Bell, but to be honest.... I'm williing to give Bell a shot this year with some better skilled players. Even Joe Girardi would have looked like shit with these guys. But he's still on a short leash. I just wonder if enough has changed to change the clubhouse attitude. I realize to make this club feel like a winner, you'd have to scrap every longterm player we've had (Berroa, Gobble, Greinke, Sweeney, Dejesus, Costa, etc), but I just can't help feeling a letdown for us fans, and for the players.